Many children give Santa Claus, the man in the red and white suit, all the credit for the presents and gifts that they receive every year on December 25th, but the truth is that in most cases, the real Santa is a woman. She’s the mom, and Santa’s hat is just one of the many hats that she wears. This time of the year can equal automatic stress for mom. Some companies start their holiday campaigns before you even get a chance to dress up and go trick-or-treating, leading to stress and anxiety about getting your children and loved ones the perfect gifts. And let’s not forget the teachers, coaches, tutors, and even co-workers that we try to include as well.
Dealing with holiday stress can lead to mom’s entering the new year feeling exhausted and drained instead of enthusiastic about a the year ahead. Sadly, the stressors combined with the endless parties can cause problems. After the first of the year some my find themselves needing alcoholism treatment. It happens. Hold up your head, get the help you need and carry forward.
Planning those next twelve months until the next ho-ho-hos can seem a daunting task. It’s important to start by establishing your budget and sticking with it. It might be smart to buy one or two things per month for the year until you’ve covered everyone on your list. Or, you may save a certain amount every month until the holiday season rolls around. It’s up to you to decide. Many like the latter option since sales and discounts are great after Thanksgiving and they want to stretch their dollar as far as possible.
It would be helpful if you limit the number of gifts you give to each child. Have them come up with a list of their top three to five gifts and go from there. Throw in small trinkets and stocking-stuffers like socks, underwear, or hair accessories and your shopping will be quick and easy. You may possibly even check a few people off your shopping list before July 4th. Imagine!
Incorporating DIY or homemade gifts is a great way to lessen the load and stress for mom. Mixing up a batch of cookies or brownies from scratch or right out of the box, can provide you with multiple gifts from just one recipe. Did your co-worker love the spaghetti that you made at the potluck? Whip them up a batch to eat with their holiday meal or to freeze and save for later. If you’re a talented knitter or seamstress, a hand-made gift in one’s favorite color is an original one- of- a kind gift.
It’s also important to remember that you can’t or won’t see everyone on December 25. You can go through your list of gift recipients and possibly buy a few gifts after Christmas when the sales are awesome as well. You probably won’t see the coach or your childhood best friend until after the hubbub has quieted down anyway, and gifts are always appreciated when they’re received.
We know the time is coming every year, but it can be so much easier to deal with if you go into the holiday season with a plan. Plus, you can’t forget to treat yourself as well. Doing fun activities with the family such as ice skating or driving around to see the lights decorating houses, etc. can lead to fun unforgettable memories. Otherwise, you could find yourself pooped, and passed out on the couch immediately after Christmas dinner.